Monday, January 14, 2008

CWP Memoir

okay. this is the edited and revised and fixed memoir. the othe one was a first draft. please, maria, gina, bela the new one????? this may need help. oh and what grade is caitlin in?????

Fairfield University was a respectable place. Immaculate lawns, trees ready for climbing, and old looking brick buildings welcomed you to a summer program you may never forget. I loved this after just a few days at the Connecticut Writing Program. Friends surrounded me in the semi young group first consisting of Brianne, Charlotte, Noodle, me, and sometimes Caitlin, Gina, and Maria. We were happy just writing in a place that was almost completely supportive. I almost couldn’t believe that this place had once scared me. Cause on my first day it was totally different.

I had walk into this huge room with lots of tables and chairs lined up neatly. About 5 rows high and about fifteen chairs to a table, it looked like the ideal place to scare someone new to this like me. I walked in with this boy Quinn, he seemed quiet compared to everyone else, but I don’t really think either of us knew what to expect. Behind a huge wall revealed about five other people, and old lady who would end up leading us, a strict woman named Justine, and a really nice and relaxed looking man, named Jeff would also be in charge too. I sit down and wait, watching groups of kids who know each other squeal with excitement, while other kids like me wait.

I kept thinking like great, this will be worse than prompts or CMTs. I’m stuck in this dumb writing program just so I can be in the high writing class, 8-1. Six hours wasted each day and I can’t believe it cost $700. I already hate this place. But every day I showed up with my brown hair and blonde highlights pulled back in a ponytail or braids and my feet in flip flops or sneakers. My shorts and a tee-shirt was what I wore, just like all the rest of them here, we didn’t care as much of how well we were dressed, we all just dressed for comfort. I almost couldn’t believe that I loved this place; that I smiled all the time and laughed constantly too.

When I first saw Charlotte, as she came in with shorts and a tee-shirt, I was ecstatic. She was the first person I knew there, the first and only person I knew before we started. We weren’t really friends, nor are we now, but when you see only one familiar face in a room, you tend to gravitate towards them, or at least that’s what I do.

I saw other people there too, a girl with curly brown Shirley Temple like hair. She had a blue dress shirt tucked into her blue jean shorts and a rainbow belt. I figured she’d be so goody two shoes who would annoy me non-stop. There was also this girl when I looked across the room. This girl, with blonde hair and a flowery blue colored spaghetti strap shirt. She slowly turned towards me and I mouth, “Hi……” She mouthed hi back. She slowly got up and walked towards me. She sat down next to me and that kind of just started out our friendship.

During that first day, I met a lot of people. Kenzie, who I’d later call Noodle, she was the one with the Shirley Temple hair. Brianne, she was the girl who had sat next to me, the blonde one. Caitlin, is this amazing and funny sophomore, and the freshmen Maria and Gina, they are these two really nice girls who I found out almost a week and a half in, are twins. This made up our core group. Well, most of it anyways. Caitlin, Maria and Gina sat with the other high schoolers but they talked with us more. Brianne, Charlotte and I started to sit together with Kenzie in tow. On that first day, Bri, Charlotte, Kenzie and I walked into this huge room, the cafeteria. As a group, we started gravitating towards the middle of the room. Slowly I walked towards this table at the center, a great spot, and it was empty! We sat down there relieved that there was an open table in the crowded room. We each ate pizza, fries, and of course one whole ice cream cone and one whole sundae every lunch. We’d go outside with 15 minutes left for our lunch brake and go climb trees and take amazing pictures. When we’d come back inside, our spot in that huge room, in what I called the “conference room”, is the second row up, closest to the door. It’s the spot I sat at on the first day, and every day that followed. Mid-afternoon, we’d go to the computer lab. We all sat in the back row, up on the right. That was until I met Bela on that third day.
You see on that third day, we were split into groups. I was with a few girls I didn’t really know but Kenzie was in my group. Brianne, she was annoyed because she was in a group with people we didn’t know. After about an hour of conferencing with those groups, we were reunited with our friends. When Bri walked back towards us though, this smart, nice, funny and cool looking girl came too. Brianne said, “Hey everyone, this is Bela. She’s in 7th grade too!” Bela stood in front of me and the extent of our first conversation was “Hi”…… “Hi” “Hi!” “Hi” “Hhhhhiiiiiii” “Hi.” Then she left to go back to her group of friends.. As you can see, I didn’t really think that we would be close, I mean those hi’s were kind of awkward and I was wondering why did she only talk to me? But the next day, she was sitting next to me, her on my right and Bri on my left. Charlotte and Kenzie were always a few seats over. But that also started a huge drama.

Bela is a sugar addict. You can’t have a soda each day at 9 in the morning and not be called one. So day after day I would wait for Bela if she didn’t have enough candy and needed to buy more, or if she needed to get something from her huge mass of stuff that she hadn’t grabbed before. I didn’t mind it and I mean sometimes I was getting something too. But Brianne, she got so annoyed. See, she wouldn’t wait for Bela, so I did. There wouldn’t be enough seats in the computer lab for all of us. So instead of splitting up, Bela and I would sit together somewhere else. She didn’t save both me and Bela seats like I would’ve. She kind of tried to separate us; that only made us closer.
I had written a poem about Brianne, about her, and the poem said, “Wardrobe is adorable, sometimes stronger than her.” This embodied what she was like. When I first saw her, I thought she was going to be a little rude and very snooty, but she was really just quiet and extremely insecure. I learned this and wrote this seemingly harmless line in her poem. Then someone who was anonymous decided to point out the fact that I thought her clothes made a bolder statement than she did. For 3 straight days, everyone in the back row on the right of the computer lab, they just kept writing all these things. The thing is, they knew it was true. I apologized though and she forgave me.

That didn’t mean the drama was over though. When Bela and I continued to be extremely close friends, Brianne got even more jealous. She started hitting me, pushing and just saying rude things that eventually made me just not want to be near her. Bela and I were affected the most by this. Noodle and Charlotte barely cared and Caitlin, Maria and Gina weren’t even aware. So after a while, Brianne stopped sitting with us, she moved to a different area, she talked with other people and we just started to try and forget her.

But on the last few days, Bri started talking to us again. I guess we didn’t want to end it badly, or at least as badly. Bela and I told her it was us who had prank called her a few days earlier. We had used Bela’s cell phone, demanded real estate info, and talked with a very weird almost Mediterranean accent. Basically, we found out that our two messages had freaked her out. Now things were semi-normal with Bri again. I mean, I still disliked her and so did Bela, but we figured maybe we should be nicer, include her a little, a mean we didn’t need to be best friends, only tolerant of each other. We ended the two week session of the Connecticut Writing Project hugging and laughing and already missing one another. Bela, Noodle and I knew we would keep in touch with hour long phone calls and sleepovers every month, but we were still just sad to end an amazing 2 weeks that felt like four. We will all probably do this again next year, and we probably will all try to stay in the same session, but there isn’t anyone saying, I will be there next year.

21 comments:

Bela said...

Maddie, look this over carefully for spelling and grammar errors. But don't forget - you're portraying the characters for the first time - be careful what you say. Explain in depth what they were really like, how jokes were just jokes, not ridiculous insults, or how the way a person first acts doesn't mean that's who they are. Keep writing - it's brilliant so far!!!

Maddie said...

thnx. i think i have to cut out a lot though.

Kenzie/Noodle said...

omg it's bloddy brilliant, lol but i dont remember bri hitting u and stuff? there are some grammar erros like bela said but other than that it's great,luv ya.

Maddie said...

thnx. that's cus u weren't there when bri hit me. it was when we'd walk back from the computer labs and in the big room.

Maria said...

You make us sound so clueless! :D Yeah, we had no idea about all this 7th grade summer drama until I read about it here!

Again, and I hope you read this when I left this in a comment on the first draft: DON'T CALL MRS. WINSLOW OLD! Very, very bad idea....

You have definitely chopped out some parts that were annoying me the first time around, so plaudits to you for that. And also you have put in a lot more attitude and your own opinions... more of your own voice, I guess I should say.

"I figured she’d be so goody two shoes who would annoy me non-stop." That line made me smile.

More constructive/obnoxious criticism later... I've got to read some more stuff and post some more on Sound Bites.

Gina said...

Very nice introduction, Maddie. The first paragraph totally changed the way the second paragraph worked. There's nothing like a good introduction to help sort things out (or should I say, exposition! Go ahead, look it up.)

I still think some of the middle bits could use a bit of fixing... Mediterranean accent? I like how you added more "voice" to your narrator, but the last couple of paragraphs sound a little whiny, in my opinion. No offense, but some parts sounded like a documentation of all the bad things you say Bri did to you, like a list of grievances. I almost think that this reworked piece should be called Me vs. Bri (it even rhymes! Yay!)

One more thing- you should write out the number five, it will look more professional.

This has come a long way, nice edits so far.

Anonymous said...

Is this a true story was Bri rly soo mean. Are you nice to her now. Do u like her now. are u friends with her? That was a rly mean poem portraying "Bri" as a rly mean person like a the blonde haired girl from mean girls?. Did u wanta make it seem like she was rude and mean and hated everyone and wanted to be better. I never saw her hurt you. I saw a shy nice girl who wanted to become a better writer and meet new people not be the person who nobody likes. you have to give everybody a chance. Is everybody trying to gang up on her and hate her. Maybe she just wanted to like everybody

bri said...

Ok i never hit you or did half the things u said i did. sry if i did by accident and i hope we can become friends again. if i did i'm sooo sry if i did. And to anyone i hurt I am soo sry. Hope you can forgive me and we can become good good friends. Sry to anybody i hurt and thnks for being there for me in the two weeks. Hope all is well Luv Bri

Maddie said...

no wat, this may b a little overexaggerated. but it was also true. I dont hav a problem with bri anymore, but the skool assignment was to write it from my point of view last time. if i c bri again, i wont b rude, just maybe a lil carefuller.

Maddie said...

also bri, wat was the point of doing the annoymous? [by the way this isn't meant 2b rude] i told it like it was, how i remembered it. im srry.

Bri said...

I know Maddie but when i first read all the comments it felt like all of guys were like ganging up on me. Ya i know i did act like i was in 6th not 7th. But im totally over it and I felt like you were trying to show im soo mean and i hate everbody and i mean and rude and like Winni From Bring it on (All or Nothing) or the blonde girl from Mean girls. Im not like that at all maybe my actions showed that but im sry for evrything i did to you and bela and noodle.

Maddie said...

first of all, i am no longer mad and upset or anything. read the emails i sent u. bela just sticks up 4 her friends and especially 4 me. we had been sick of it, but now i am totally of it[again]. noodle had no part in theis so dont b srry for her. she doesnt really care. i am not trying 2 b mean at all, but apparently my writing shows otherwise.

The Narrator said...

And so it appeared that our two protagonists had reached an agreement, and that all amends were made. Journey over, all is mended, and it's not just for today- but tomorrow and forever, ever after. All the curses have been ended, the reverses wiped away, all is tenderness and laughter for forever. after.

Quinn said...

Charlotte was pretty cool

Quinn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Quinn said...

Did anyone else really want to kill Veronika after two weeks?
+

Maddie said...

naw i think we all kinda loved somewhat different veronika

Quinn said...

yeah well you dont have to go to school withher...

Maddie said...

i know. i feel bad for you because of that aspect but for two weeks it was kind of funny.

Gina said...

I think we should all appreciate the comic relief supplied by our good chum Veronika. Her amazing sense of comedic timing made us all laugh. The story that REALLY should be written about last summer's CWP is Veronika vs. The World and/or Veronika vs. Nathan (and Carl)

Maddie said...

that would be hIlarIous